OPW delighted to welcome Dr. William H 'Smitty' Smith to Derrynane House to premier his new documentary: "An American Story; Race, Amity and Other"

25 October 18

On 24th October 2018 the Office of Public Works was delighted to welcome Dr. William H. 'Smitty' Smith (Founding Director of the National Center for Race Amity, Boston MA) and Don Mullan (Director of Hope Initiatives International) to Derrynane House, the family home of Daniel O'Connell, to premier Dr. Smith's new documentary: An American Story: Race Amity and the Other Tradition. A powerful element of the documentary is its focus on Frederick Douglass, an escaped slave, and the powerful influence that Daniel O'Connell had in shaping his future and on the abolition of slavery in America.

Derrynane House is one of four historical locations chosen for the screenings.  They are:

  • Leinster - Dublin, where Frederick Douglass met Daniel O'Connell in 1845.
  • Ulster - Maghera, the birthplace of Charles Thompson, who promoted E Pluribus Unum (Out of many, one) as the motto of the United States, which is printed on every US Dollar Bill.
  • Connaught - The Neale, Mayo, where the word 'boycott' as a non-violent action was first coined in 1879, subsequently shaping non-violent movements around the world.
  • Munster - Derrynane House, Kerry, the family home of Daniel O'Connell.

In advance of the screening, Dr Smith planted an Atlas Cedar in the gardens of Derrynane House to mark both the bi-centenary of the birth of Frederick Douglas and Ireland's solidarity with the Great Green Wall of Africa. The natural range of Atlas Cedar is the Atlas Mountains in Morocco.

The screening was attended by representatives of the local community, Coiste Pobail, the Daniel O'Connell Summer School committee, Failte Ireland, the OPW, and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. The documentary was introduced by Jimmy Deenihan, whose voice features in the film, and was followed by an engaging question and answer session. The documentary is very relevant to the legacy of Daniel O'Connell in bringing people together, embracing and supporting the rights of all humanity.


For further information, please contact OPW Client Services & Communications Unit at opwcsc@opw.ie or 087 947 5552

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